Daily Archives: September 2, 2004

Vande Mataram 1

Heard it after ages on AIR. Not the AR Rehman pop version but the old world, slow and gentle version that we used to sing in the school assembly. In fact Rehman’s version is not really the Vande mataram that I am talking about. It’s interesting to note how the same lyrics, set in a different backdrop of melody evoke different feelings. The Rehman version is pop patriotism, more josh than the older one, asserts our patriotism with gusto. The old one is sober, and puts me at ease, calms me down. It’s more about cherishing what you have instead of asserting it. May be because I associate it with that security that childhood provides. It also reminds me of waking up to the strains of the sarod in the early hours of morning, coming from the radio, which my mom would be listening to as she went around rushing to get us ready for school.
There’s a third version too, which belongs to some black and white movie. This one also has josh but of a different kind. More to do with anger, revolution and “get out of our country” feelings. This one’s not often heard.

I remember thinking when I was a kid, that the wordings (if not the exact ones then some derivatives) of Vande Mataram provide a good means of traditional, unique sounding names to eager parents waiting to name their babies. Shubhra, Jyotsana, Pulkit, Yamini, Phull Kusumit, Drumudul, Shobhini, Suhasini, Sumadhur bhashini..Shasya Shyamalam..

So many names!